Tag Archives: Great Depression

This Day in History 4/30: The opening of the 1939 New York Worlds Fair

On April 30, 1939, while New York was still recovering from the Great Depression, the World’s Fair of 1939 opened in Flushing Meadows, Queens.  It was attended by over 44 milllion visitors, and was the second largest Worlds Fair in history (after the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair).

Just as the world was about to explode into another world war, the New York World’s Fair gave its visitors a vision of the future–the “World of Tomorrow.” it featured advances in robotics, television, new gadgets and pavilions from most countries in the world.

It’s a vision of the future that still inspires and frightens us.

Attached is two official films of the 1939 New York World’s Fair.  Though they are silent, they contain text cels and provide amongst the best primary source material on this important cultural event.

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Resources for the Classroom: Latest edition of “History Now” about the US Economy

An Enron stock certificate. I believe these are legal tender in Hell.

Next year, there will be questions coming from the classroom about the economy.  Make sure you have the right tools for the job.

This month’s edition of History Now from the Gilder-Lehrman Institute of American History focuses on the American economy, and is packed with information about our economic development, focusing on entrepreneurs, the development of banking, the stock market, and the evolution of American fiscal and monetary policy. 

On the sidebar is some interesting information for teachers, including lesson plans and interactive units for students.  Definitely check out the slideshow on financial scandals, which cover everything from the Duer-Pintard debt market scandal of 1792 to the Enron mess of 2002.

Speaking of Gilder-Lehrman, that reminds me: I’ll be sending out one more post before I head out for my Gilder-Lehrman summer seminar at UCLA next week.  Depending on the workload, I may or may not post when I’m in California.  I’ll know when I get there.

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